Pakistan Agriculture News, Wheat

Food ministry dismisses talk of wheat shortage

ISLAMABAD: The Ministry of National Food Security and Research has emphasised that the damage caused to standing crops, especially in Punjab, due to heavy rains is moderate and there is no likelihood of food insecurity or emergency situation in the country.

“The losses suffered by farmers are indeed painful and the government is doing its best to estimate the damage and relief will soon be announced for the farmers,” the ministry said in a statement on Friday.

It quoted Federal Minister for National Food Security and Research Sahibzada Mehboob Sultan as saying that he would visit the rain-hit areas and meet the farmers and families there. He announced that the government would provide every possible relief to the farmers.

The ministry pointed out that latest reports received from the Punjab Agriculture Department suggested that there was no threat of wheat shortage and food insecurity in the country. “The damage to wheat, maize and gram crops is moderate and does not indicate any shortage. Moreover, the speculation about wheat shortage is not correct,” it said.

According to the ministry, data of minor crops is also being collected and the Punjab Agriculture Department is trying to reach out to all possible areas to gauge the actual loss. “Data from other provinces is yet to be received and a letter to this effect is being sent to related provincial departments.”

The Meteorological Department has also been directed to remain vigilant and maintain a steady liaison with the provincial agriculture departments in order to send timely weather reports to the farmers.